Columbus Light & Water’s operating revenues for its water department were up to $10.49 million in fiscal year 2015, compared to $10.16 million in 2014.
Operating expenses were also up, rising to $9.07 million, from $8.99 million in 2014, according to a water audit CL&W board members reviewed Thursday.
CL&W general manager Todd Gale said the report, for Fiscal Year 2015, is fairly straight forward. The fiscal year ended Sept. 30.
CL&W’s net income rose year-over-year, to $894,808 from $622,175.
Gale said the revenue increase is thanks to a 5-percent rate increase. The operating expenses are due in part to a few repairs and other procedures at the wastewater plant.
The audit says the largest increases in operating expenses were due to a 5-percent increase in wastewater plant expenses and a 7.6-percent increase in administrative expenses.
Interest expense was $957,861 — down 2.7 percent from FY 2014.
Operating revenue increases came from a 3.1 percent increase from metered water sales and a 3.2 percent revenue increase in sewer service charges.
The department’s net assets were down to $68.94 million in FY 2015, from $70.19 million in FY 2014.
Board attorney Jeff Smith said the board didn’t have to accept the water audit if they had questions for Wanda Holly, a certified public accountant with Watkins, Ward and Stafford. Holly wasn’t able to attend Thursday’s meeting.
“If you have questions, you ought not to approve the audit today,” Smith said. “Once you approve the audit, you have basically said we understand what her problems are if any and we accept the audit.”
Smith said the board has until September to accept the audit.
Board member Jimmy Graham said he wants to wait to speak to Holly about the audit before accepting it.
“I would like to talk to her and look her in the eye and ask in layman’s terms, are we in good standing and heading in the right direction?” Graham said. “Are there things she sees in our finances that we need to work on or be concerned about and do a better job? I’m not an accountant and I’ve got to trust her to look me in the eye and tell me we’re OK.”
Alex Holloway was formerly a reporter with The Dispatch.
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